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The 138th Business Conditions (October-December 2014)

Survey Procedures

  Number of companies surveyed Number of valid response companies Response rate (%)
Manufacturing 4,643 (24.5) 4,496 (24.6) 96.8
Construction 2,414 (12.7) 2,317 (12.7) 96.0
Wholesale trade 1,198 (6.3) 1,138 (6.2) 95.0
Retail trade 4,694 (24.8) 4,514 (24.7) 96.2
Services 6,003 (31.7) 5,814 (31.8) 96.9
Total 18,952 (100.0) 18,279 (100.0) 96.4

Note: Figures in parenthesis show the composition ratios (%)

(1) Date of the survey:
As of November 15, 2014
(2) Survey method:
Feedback given to management consultants belonging to the Commerce and Industry Association and Chamber of Commerce and Industry throughout the country, and to survey personnel of the Federation of Small Business Associations
(3) Companies surveyed:
The nationwide complement of small and medium-sized enterprises as defined in the Small and Medium-sized Enterprise Basic Act
(4) Others
・For every quarter from April to June, the data in previous years is replaced with seasonally-adjusted data.
・The most recent long-term time series data is displayed on the website of the Small and Medium Enterprise Agency as well as that of the Organization for Small and Medium Enterprises and Regional Innovation

Business conditions DI

(1) All industries

For the October-December period of 2014, the business conditions DI for all industries was minus 19.4 (down 0.7 points from minus 18.7 for the previous quarter), proving an increase in the negative margin.

The business conditions DI for manufacturing was minus 14.4 (down 2.1 points from minus 12.3 for the previous quarter), indicating an increase in the negative margin. The business conditions DI for non-manufacturing was minus 21.0 (down 0.4 points from minus 20.6 for the previous quarter), showing an increase in the negative margin.

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprises

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprises

(2) Manufacturing

The business conditions DI for manufacturing was minus 14.4 (down 2.1 points from minus 12.3 for the previous quarter), indicating an increase in the negative margin.

To be specific for the 14 industries in manufacturing, the DI became positive from a negative value for chemical and allied products: 1.0 (up 18.7 points from the previous quarter). The DI did not turn positive but the negative margin decreased for three industries, including minus 8.7 (up 1.2 points from the previous quarter) for transportation equipment and minus 10.8 (up 0.6 points from the previous quarter) for electricity / information and telecommunication equipment / electronic parts. The DI fell from a positive value to a negative value for machinery and equipment: minus 0.9 (down 3.0 points from the previous quarter). The DI remained negative with the negative margin increased for nine industries, including minus 29.2 (down 14.3 points from the previous quarter) for pulp, paper and paper products, minus 27.1 (down 6.0 points from the previous quarter) for timbers and wood products, minus 7.0 (down 5.6 points from the previous quarter) for metal products, and minus 21.5 (down 5.2 points from the previous quarter) for miscellaneous manufacturing industries.

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprisesby industry (1)
(From October-December, 2011 to October-December, 2014)

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprises by industry (1)

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprisesby industry (2)
(From October-December, 2011 to October-December, 2014)

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprises by industry (1)

(3) Non-manufacturing

The business conditions DI for non-manufacturing was minus 21.0 (down 0.4 points from minus 20.6 for the previous quarter), showing an increase in the negative margin.

To be specific for industries, the DI remained negative with the negative margin decreased for construction: minus 8.5 (up 0.1 points from the previous quarter). The DI remained negative with the negative margin increased for three industries: minus 19.9 (down 1.4 points from the previous quarter) for wholesale trade, minus 18.4 (down 0.3 points from the previous quarter) for services, and minus 32.1 (down 0.2 points from the previous quarter) for retail trade.

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprises
by industry
(From October-December, 2011 to October-December, 2014)

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprises by industry

To be specific for sectors in Services, the DI remained negative with the negative margin decreased for some sectors, including minus 3.2 (up 2.6 points from the previous quarter) for information and communications and advertising, minus 21.1 (up 2.5 points from the previous quarter) for personal services including automobile maintenance services and others, and minus 11.9 (up 2.2 points from the previous quarter) for accommodations. Meanwhile, the DI remained negative with the negative margin increased for other sectors, including minus 23.1 (down 5.0 points from the previous quarter) for personal services related with daily lives and minus 20.6 (down 3.4 points from the previous quarter) for services to business establishments including transportation and warehousing.

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprises engaged
in services industries by industry
(From October-December, 2011 to October-December, 2014)

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprises engaged in services industries by industry

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprises by size of trade

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprises by size of trade

Financing DI

The financing DI for all industries was minus 15.3 (down 0.3 points from minus 15.0 for the previous quarter), indicating an increase in the negative margin.

To be specific for industries, the DI remained negative with the negative margin decreased for manufacturing: minus 12.7 (up 0.4 points from minus 13.1 for the previous quarter). The DI remained negative with the negative margin increased for non-manufacturing: minus 16.1 (down 0.3 points from minus 15.8 for the previous quarter).

 

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprises by size of trade

Changes in the business conditions DI of small and medium-sized enterprises by size of trade

[Topics (1)] Trends in the materials/goods purchase unit prices DI, the unit sales price/per-customer sales DI, and the profit (ordinary profit) DI

For the current quarter, the materials/goods purchase unit prices DI (“rise” minus “fall” on a year-on-year basis) was 45.3 (down 1.2 points from 46.5 for the previous quarter), showing a decrease in the positive margin but still remaining at a high level. The unit sales price/per-customer sales DI (same as above) was minus 12.1 (down 2.0 points from minus 10.1 for the previous quarter), indicating an increase in the negative margin, and the profit (ordinary profit) DI (same as above) was minus 28.7 (down 0.8 points from minus 27.9 for the previous quarter), also showing an increase in the negative margin. Under such circumstances, rises in materials prices, etc. due to a cheaper yen must be closely watched in the future.

The materials/goods purchase unit prices DI, the unit sales price/per-customer sales DI and the ordinary profit DI (on a year-on-year basis)

The materials/goods purchase unit prices DI, the unit sales price/per-customer sales DI and the ordinary profit DI (on a year-on-year basis)

[Topics (2)] Changes in the excess or shortage of employees DI by industry

The excess or shortage of employees DI (“excess” minus “shortage” by current quarter level) decreased over the period from the middle of last year through this year. For the current quarter, the DI for some industries turned upward, but the DI for all industries was minus 12.5 (down 0.8 points from minus 11.7 for the previous quarter), indicating a growing sense of shortage. To be specific for industries, the DI for construction and services in particular indicated strong feelings of shortage: minus 24.7 and minus 15.7 respectively.

Changes in excess or shortage of employees DI of small and medium-sized enterprises by industry

Changes in Excese or shortage of employees DI of small and medium-sized enterprises by industry